The latest national poll from YouGov has [Donald Trump] north of 30 percent, comfortably ahead of Ben Carson.And that's the key point -- Trump's still leading in polls of registered voters.
This is a poll of Republican registered voters, not likely voters.
It may be the case, as yesterday’s Reuters poll suggests, that Trump does worse in polls of likely voters because some chunk of his base consists of disaffected Republicans who don’t much bother to vote anymore.(In the Reuters poll, Carson led Trump 33%-26% among likely voters.)
If Trump can convince those people to turn out, he’s an even bigger threat to win than everyone thinks. If he can’t, then some of the splashier polls, like this one, showing him leading big among registered voters are overstating his actual strength on election night. In fact, this is just the second poll tracked by RCP since September 10th to show Trump north of 30 percent. The other, from ABC/WaPo, was also a poll of registered voters.So if Trump can get people who usually don't turn out to show at caucuses and polling places, then he's still the guy to beat. I think it's possible that those people will be more motivated to vote, because voting for Trump is a thumb in the system's eye. But it's true that he'll need to get them to follow through. And maybe neither of these neophytes can do that. But we'll see in a few months.